Melissa Vigar

Executive Director

Melissa is a Registered Social Worker who has been actively working in the field of Acquired Brain Injury since 2001.  Throughout her career she has provided support to survivors and the individuals who support them both in the non-profit and private sector.  With collaboration and compassion being her focus, she has supervised teams and implemented trainings and programs in both community and residential settings.   She is passionate about improving the quality of life for anyone who has suffered an ABI as well as ensuring that the individuals who support them are equipped with resources, education and strategies for self care.
Outside of work, you can find Melissa in the kitchen cooking and baking with her two girls.  She uses the fuel from these treats to power her other passions of hot yoga and rock climbing.


Carrie MacKinnon

Group Facilitator 

Carrie has many years of experience providing case management, assessment and support to adults living with the effects of an acquired brain injury. She recently attained her Master of Social Work degree and is a Registered Social Worker. Through a client and family focused approach, Carrie works to promote independence, engagement, and an improved quality of life for those suffering from an ABI.

Outside of work, Carrie is a busy mom of 3. She enjoys the outdoors spending time walking her Boxer, Indie, hiking and camping in the summer with her family. She also enjoys spending time in the kitchen with her daughters.


Julie Notto

Programs and Services Coordinator / Peer Support Coordinator

Julie has a post graduate certificate in adult mental health and over 10 years experience in the non-profit sector developing health and education programs for youth, adults and their families. Julie channels her passion for education and advocacy into developing programs that support individuals, and their families, dealing with physical and mental health issues to improve their quality of and zest for life.

Outside of the office you can find Julie cycling through the city, playing basketball and making short films with her two boys and walking their sweet labrador retriever Starr.


Meri Perra

Communications and Event Coordinator

Meri Perra has several years of experience connecting people to resources, through her former position at Find Help Information Services. Since leaving Findhelp, she earned a diploma in journalism, worked as a contributor and assistant editor for an online parenting magazine, and held a position as a news and sports editor for a digital media company.

You can often spot Meri riding around town in her massive cargo bike with her two daughters (wearing helmets of course!). She enjoys volunteering at her kids’ school and housing cooperative, and fits in power yoga in her spare time. Her new favourite past time is playing Crazy 8s with her family – a game she (re)-learned at the BIST Social Drop In!